CHESAPEAKE-- 59-year-old Don Burford, Sr. of Virginia Beach drowned near the High Rise Bridge in Chesapeake Monday.

Burford, who was with his girlfriend and several family members, went under the surface of the Elizabeth River near The Cove, an inlet popular for swimming.

'He was in just up to his knees, and, you know, what are the chances that you're just gonna step into a hole that's 10, 12, or 15 feet deep?' said longtime friend Michael Marquart.

Marquart and Burford met more than 2 decades ago when they joined up with New Wave group A Flock of Seagulls. During the years that followed they would work on many projects together, spending hours in Marquart's recording studio in Virginia Beach. Burford also was part of Marquart's group A Bad Think.

'He was a great guy. I mean he always had a great attitude and was an excellent bass player and a really good singer,' share Marquart. 'He was such a proficient player, you know, I had to, as a producer, I had to kind of calm him down and go, 'Okay, Don, you're playing a little bit too much. We're just gonna fit in the pocket here. It's not a bass solo.'

Burford is survived by several family members, many of whom share his passion for music.

Marquart said many people will remember Burford not only for his abilities but for the way he lived his life and shared it with others.

'We've talked about everything, you know, life and death, marriage, and kids, and life, and getting older, and all that kind of stuff,' Marquart told 13News. 'I mean he was always happy and always positive and always great to be around and made everybody fell better that was, you know, around him.'

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